London Luton Airport recognised for carbon management

Environmental Aviation Climate solutions Operations

London Luton Airport (LLA) has achieved Level 4 of the Airport Carbon Accreditation (ACA) scheme, becoming only the third major UK airport to achieve this level.

The ACA scheme is a globally recognised carbon management programme, overseen by Airports Council International (ACI), that independently assesses and recognises efforts to manage and reduce airport carbon emissions.

As a Level 4 accredited airport, LLA has demonstrated that it is ‘transforming its operations to achieve carbon reductions in line with global climate goals’. This achievement also highlights LLA’s commitment to working with key airport partners to reduce their emissions at the airport too.

The Level 4 accreditation is a significant milestone in LLA’s sustainability journey, underlining the progress of its Net Zero roadmap and the drive to achieve significant carbon reductions across all aspects of the airport including partner operations.

Key initiatives include:
• Collaboration with airlines to increase the number of quieter, more fuel-efficient next-generation aircraft operating from the airport - reducing airline emissions by 20% per aircraft
• Finalising plans for the installation of a 10Mwp solar plant at the airport that will generate enough green energy to satisfy 25% of the airport’s electricity demand
• Transitioning to alternative sustainable fuels (e.g., HVO) saving around 80% of carbon across the carbon lifecycle, as well as continued investment in electric vehicles

This year also saw the transformational launch of the fully automated, electrically powered Luton DART connecting the terminal and the mainline railway at Luton Airport Parkway station. Encouraging passengers to travel to LLA by rail, rather than car, will reduce the environmental impact of journeys to and from the airport, saving around 80% on carbon emissions (6.8kg of CO2e per passenger journey from central London). The DART has carried over one million passengers within the first six months of operation.

Olivier Jankovec, Director General of ACI Europe, commented: “I’m delighted to see that London Luton Airport has reached Level 4 of the Airport Carbon Accreditation scheme. This means the airport is now implementing a long-term carbon management strategy with absolute CO2 emission reductions in line with the Paris Agreement – along with a comprehensive partnership programme to trigger CO2 reductions from their operational partners and third parties using the airport. London Luton airport’s progress within the programme and this latest advancement of accreditation is truly impressive and reflects their unwavering dedication to sustainability.”

Alberto Martin, Chief Executive Officer at London Luton Airport, added: “London Luton Airport is committed to sustainable aviation and achieving the highest level of the ACA programme* is a significant milestone, demonstrating our commitment to minimising the environmental impacts of the airport. LLA has taken important steps to set an ambition to be Net Zero in its carbon emissions by 2040. However, we recognise there is still a great deal of work to be done, continuing to demonstrate our focus on delivering on our sustainability commitments for our passengers, industry and local community.”

* Without the use of offsetting